ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

July 25, 2011 -

The Australian Christian Lobby has called for games to be banned if they contain violence that is "excessive or gratuitous." The call came as the world digests the bizarre rambling of a 1500-page manifesto written by Norwegian killer Anders Behring Breivik and released online shortly before he killed 76 people in and around Oslo, Norway.

The Australian federal government said yesterday that Breivik committed his crimes because there is "something clearly intrinsically wrong with him", not because he played violent video games.

NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge did say that Modern Warfare 2 should be reviewed to have a more restrictive R18+ rating in the country. It is currently rated MA15+.

Minister for Home Affairs, Brendan O'Connor was asked yesterday on ABC's Insiders TV program about the link between video games and the Oslo shooting. He responded by saying that it would not change his support for the R18+ rating, which he argued would prevent adult video games from getting into the hands of teens because it is rated MA15+ or lower.

"At the moment the most popular adult-themed games that are played only lawfully by adults around the world are played by 15 year olds here," he said.

O'Connor promised that this would change once an R18+ rating for games becomes law.

"But look, because there is a madman who has done just such atrocities in Norway, I don't think that means that we are going to close down film or the engagement with games," he said. "I think it really points to, of course, a person who - clearly there is something wrong with this person to sort of cause such devastation in Norway. But I'm not sure that the argument goes that as a result of watching a game you turn into that type of person. I think there is something clearly intrinsically wrong with him."

The Australian Christian Lobby managing director Jim Wallace disagreed and criticized O'Connor over his remarks. He said that if even a few deranged minds could be "taken over the edge by an obsession with violent games" then the game should be banned.

"The studied indifference of this killer to the suffering he was inflicting, his obvious dehumanising of his victims and the evil methodical nature of the killings have all the marks of games scenarios," said Wallace. "How can we allow the profits of the games industry and selfishness of games libertarians to place our increasingly dysfunctional society at further risk? Even if this prohibition were to save only one tragedy like this each twenty years it would be worth it."

A spokesmen for NSW Attorney-General Greg Smith, who abstained from the recent SCAG meeting vote on R18+, said that the AH agreed with O'Connor's comments on Insiders.

"It won't make any difference to our support, which should be confirmed shortly," said the spokesperson.

The Australian games industry trade group Interactive Games & Entertainment Association, said that the video game connection to Breivik is the exception rather than the rule:

"I think it's fair to say that in our communities there will always be individuals who will have a predisposition towards violent behaviour, the causes for which fall into a very wide range of factors," said IGEA chief executive Ron Curry. "To single out a symptom, rather than the underlying cause, does little to understand, or show respect to, the greater tragedy."

Source: Sydney Morning Herald


Comments

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

So one country is overreacting to something that happened several 1000 miles away?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

I'll venture a guess they had this solution in mind and were just waiting for the right problem.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

SO they have a solution and are in the market for a problem.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Make 80 hours of Hello Kitty game compulsory NOW!

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Honestly, more people should be calling out Wallace for using a tragedy of this scale to push his own agenda. You couldn't even wait until the victims have been identified before you jump on your soapbox?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Others have said it differently here, but let me pipe up a repeat: "The Australian Christian Lobby managing director Jim Wallace ...." "...said that if even a few deranged minds could be 'taken over the edge by ..." Do you REALLY want me to go there? I've been there several times here in the past and on other similar issues on Facebook, so, yeah, I COULD go there if you REALLY want me to. :/
Nightwng2000 NW2K Software http://www.facebook.com/nightwing2000 Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as http://groups.myspace.com/pfenl

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

No one is going to kill because of a game. There is no one out there who would not have killed but he played some rounds of Modern Warfare 3 and so decided to go ahead and kill people. It just doesn't work like that. That game has sold millions upon millions of sales. What is different about this guy that he kills while all those other millions of people, adults and kids, don't?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Religion has caused far more wars and created far more violence then video games ever have; So tell me, why isn't religion banned?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Mr.Tastix for the win!

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Exactly.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Where does it end? Ron Curry speaks perfect sense at the end - you can't just blame a whole atrocious event on a single issue. "Even if this prohibition were to save only one tragedy like this each twenty years it would be worth it." This fallacious logic always crops up. What's that saying about trading security for liberty? Exactly. Besides which, banning everything that stimulates the mind can hardly be the answer. Anyway, we've seen that type of argument many times before. Here's something I'm curious about: are groups like the ACL deceitful when it comes to stating that single issues caused tragedies like in Oslo (and are taking advantage of it to further their agenda), or do they sincerely believe what they're saying? Edit: what's up with the lack of formatting?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Well I don't think the two things are mutually exclusive. I suspect these folks *do* sincerely believe video games are harmful. But the more prestige is invested in beating a particular drum, the more it can lead down the path of deceitfulness (whether its intentional deceit or a kind of self-deceit).

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

It is also ridiculous to think it would prevent even one single tragedy like this. It almost certainly wouldn't but these bastards like to glom onto tragedies like this and twist it and use the dead to push their own agendas. It is disgusting to me.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

He also claimed to be a Christian. I guess we should ban Christianity as well if I follow the ACL's logic correctly.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

exactly.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Amen.

-Austin from Oregon

Feel free to check out my blog.

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

Because we all know that there were never any wars or violence whatosever until video games came around, right?

Re: ACL Calls for Ban on Games in Wake of Norway Massacre

People are unhinged by religion as well. If a few deranged people can be driven to a crime by it, it should be banned.
 
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NeenekoAh, that old straw man. That is one of the ironies about the discussion, the whole point is showing how good people can still have problems with sexism and not realize it.09/17/2014 - 9:11pm
Andrew EisenYes, there have been a handful of op-eds suggesting that the term “gamer” has become tainted (two that I know of) but that’s the opinion of only a few. I've seen an equal number from those who disagree.09/17/2014 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenExcept, you haven't provided a single example of a site that’s actually calling gamers a "collective of Sexist White Bigoted Basement Dwelling Manchildren."09/17/2014 - 8:55pm
TechnogeekIf you want to make the stereotype of gamers less painful, try calling people out when they do bad shit rather than handwave it away as "not all gamers". Even if it is a few bad apples, that'll still more than enough to spoil the barrel.09/17/2014 - 8:53pm
quiknkoldI'm not going to Sell Gamergate anymore. It can sell itself. But I will sell the integrity of the Gamer. That we are still good people, who create and donate to charitys, Who engage with those around us and just want to have a good time.09/17/2014 - 7:35pm
quiknkoldpeople should not be harrassed and punished for the actions of a few. I've always welcomed and accepted everybody who wanted to join in. Who wanted to make them, or play them. I love good strong female protagonists, and want more.09/17/2014 - 7:35pm
quiknkoldOne of the tennants of Gamergate is to stand up against Harrassment. That Gamers arent like those assholes. We can argue for days if the Sexism or Antifeminism or corruption is there or not, But the one thing I believe in and wear on my sleave is that09/17/2014 - 7:35pm
quiknkoldBut there were these websites, attacking me and people like me, for the actions of a few. and then others joined in on Twitter and other places. there was a hashtag that said "explain in 4 words a gamer" and it made me sick.09/17/2014 - 7:35pm
quiknkoldManchildren who are awful people and that the Identity of the Gamer should die. This hurt me personally. I've always identified as a Gamer. Even in my childhood years, I was a Gamer. All my friends are Gamers. Its one of the core parts of my identity.09/17/2014 - 7:34pm
quiknkoldUltimately, With the whole Gamergate thing, I jumped on it due to the harassment. A small number of assholes harrass Anita and Zoe, and then all the publications lumped together Gamers as this collective of Sexist White Bigoted Basement Dwelling09/17/2014 - 7:34pm
quiknkoldEZacharyKnight : Lemme ask you a question. We have people who cling to walls, people who fire lasers from their eyes, people who can shapeshift....and yet fabric needs to be upheld to RL physics?09/17/2014 - 6:54pm
james_fudgebody paint?09/17/2014 - 5:33pm
E. Zachary Knightquiknkold, I stand corrected on the buttcrack thing. Still, I know of no fabric that actually does that.09/17/2014 - 5:05pm
Andrew EisenSo... it's unethical to discuss the ethics surrounding public interest vs. personal privacy?09/17/2014 - 4:45pm
prh99The source for the game was just released not long ago, it's at https://github.com/keendreams/keen09/17/2014 - 4:43pm
prh99An Indiegogo champagin bought the rights to the early 90's game Keen Dreams to make it open source and release it on GOG etc. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/let-s-get-keen-dreams-re-released-legally09/17/2014 - 4:42pm
james_fudgeAlso http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-London/2014/09/17/Exposed-the-secret-mailing-list-of-the-gaming-journalism-elite09/17/2014 - 4:29pm
Andrew EisenI read the Kotaku story. Nowhere does it say anything close to "Gamers are white bigoted sexist losers." It's commenting specifically on the crap being slung at people discussing gender issues in games. So, what's the problem?09/17/2014 - 4:06pm
Andrew EisenYeah, I can imagine Spiderwoman posed like in your second link.09/17/2014 - 4:00pm
Andrew EisenThat's not the same pose. Spiderman (who is wearing an actual outfit rather than body paint) is crouched low to the ground. Kinda like a spider! Spiderwoman has her butt up in the air like she's waiting to be mounted.09/17/2014 - 3:59pm
 

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